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Peak Pilgrimage via St Anne's Church
The Peak Pilgrimage is a long distance footpath walk from Ilam to Eyam and is for anyone who likes walking. It can simply be enjoyed at that level but has an added twist – it is also a pilgrimage walk designed as a spiritual experience.
Calling in at 14 churches along the way, there is a Bible verse sticker to collect and a passport-style stamp that can be used on a special page of the Peak Pilgrimage Guide Book.
St Anne's Church Baslow is a designated Peak Pilgrimage church.
Find out more about the Peak Pilgrimage
Rambling about Ramblings
It was the night before the Peak Pilgrimage team were due to meet Clare Balding at Curbar Gap to walk the last seven pilgrimage miles with her, recording our conversation for the Radio 4 programme “Ramblings”. The weather forecast said thick snow but our pilgrimage publicity genius decided this wasn’t good enough and announced he would pray for good weather instead. The day dawned bright and clear with not a drop of precipitation until we were walking in the door of Eyam church. His prayer-power over the weather is now legendary. Let us know if you can pull off the same trick on your pilgrimage!
Clare was a delight to have as a walking companion as she quizzed each of us in turn about our part in the creation of the Pilgrimage and about the walk itself. Mike, the current Rector of Baslow, Eyam and Foolow, deciding that perambulating on the top of Froggatt Edge was too tame, dropped down to the base of the rock climbs and shinned up without a rope, something which seemed to grab Clare’s attention. If you buy the Peak Pilgrimage Guide Book, you’ll find out a lot more about the Rector’s off duty activities!
The Guide Book also contains maps and directions for this permanent 35 mile trail that winds its way through the heart of the Peak District before reaching its final destination in the historic plague village of Eyam.
In each of the churches along the way, including St Anne’s, there is a Bible verse sticker to collect, time to reflect and a passport-style stamp to enter into the Guide Book. Clare was very keen to collect these and to learn more about the churches she visited.
After a picnic stop for lunch we refreshed ourselves again at the lovely shop and café in Grindleford Church before heading out for Stoney Middleton and Eyam. Most of the time, thanks to a woolly hat a bit too large for her, Clare managed to walk incognito but she certainly generated excitement among a “Duke of Edinburgh” group who spotted her.
If you do this stretch of the pilgrimage look out for Clare’s entry in the visitors books at Grindleford and Stoney Middleton, and the Pilgrims’ visitors book in the dedicated box file at Eyam.
The programme was broadcast on Radio 4 at 3pm on Maundy Thursday, 24 March 2016. If you missed it you can always catch up with it on that fancy catch up system on the BBC website. Whatever your beliefs, if you would like to walk all or part of the Peak Pilgrimage, whether as a simple walk or as a spiritual journey then please visit the Peak Pilgrimage website for more information.